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Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Bright Green for Spring


green stink bug on ground

I wanted green, I got green! Well, a little bit anyway. I was walking on the cemetery road and this little guy was quite obvious against the bare dirt. Have a closer look.

green stink bug on ground

Do you know what it is? I knew that it was a member of the Hemiptera order- the true bugs. How did I know that? Well, their shape is distinctive. The "shield" on the back, the triangular scutellum, and the wings that cross over each other make them quite recognizable. Even when the rest of them looks different those parts just yell "Hemiptera." Remember this one, the Western conifer seed bug? Can you see those similarities?



True bugs have piercing and sucking mouth parts- for sucking plant juices. They can "bite" (pierce and suck) humans, but most don't. It looked to me like the shape of (true) bug known as a "stink bug" but I decided to pick it up anyway, which I did.

green stink bug

It did not cover me with any stinky fluids. I handled it a lot, trying to get pictures of the underside. So when I got home, I did some more research and here is what I found. It is a "green stink bug," so maybe I was just lucky that it didn't feel threatened. They are usually found in woodlands, and this section of the cemetery is heavily wooded.

green stink bug

This one seems to have yellow edges. Apparently the edge can be yellow, red, orange, or white. And the color depends on the temperature at which the bug developed. All of these colors are present on the second instar (insects can have amazing changes in body shapes and colors as they "grow"- you knew this- think about butterflies). I've never seen that except in pictures, so that will be something fun to watch for.

green stink bug

This is my favorite shot. Insects are amazing! I did get the pages set so you can see more of the pictures at a larger size.


See Leptoglossus occidentalisfor the western conifer bug
See Red Planet for amazing pictures of the instar


16 comments:

Ratty said...

That's cool! I love these pictures! I was pretty sure it was a stink bug. I did some research on these a while back. And another blog I've been reading since the beginning of my blogging days called "Poor Richard's Almanac" has been talking about their aversion to stink bugs for quite some time, so I got curious.

WillOaks Studio said...

Wow, those are amazing photos!! I just LOVE those bugs--when I find them here, I pick them up and look at them, enjoy them, too...thanks for sharing!

Duxbury Ramblers said...

Now that is a good find and a lovely colour, they are wonderful (well to me) creatures - the one we find the most here is the Forest Bug (Pentatoma rufipes).

John | Patchwork Pixels said...

It looks similar in shape to three we have in the U.K. - the green shield bug, forest bug and sloe bug.

Ann said...

What a great little bit of green you found there. That last one is really up close and personal. He sure was cooperative about getting his pictures taken

symposio said...

I love to look at these little green insects - they're among my favourites. Great photos!

rainfield61 said...

The stinky smell will stay for a long time, on your hand.

wenn said...

i love to look at insects too.

spinninglovelydays said...

I thought it was a leaf or a shoot at first. We have stink bugs here too, but I think ours look creepier, lol.

Sharkbytes said...

Ratty- I've seen quite a few smaller, brown stink bugs, but I'd never seen this big green guy!

Karen- Glad I'm not the only one who likes to pick them up.

Carol- must be really similar. That Pentatoma was another alternate genus name- the taxonomy is shifting so fast.

John- All cousins I'm sure.

Ann- yes, I was very lucky with poking and picking him up.

symposio- Hi there- you have them too? I think they must be quite ubiquitous.

rainfield- so far I've been lucky. I used to pick up the smaller ones when I was a kid

wenn- do you have really big ones?

Ivy- are they bigger? Creepier how?

Glynis said...

We have a bug like yours in Cyprus, he is a lime green colour.

Loved the pics.

Sharkbytes said...

Glynis- symposio is in Greece, and he has 'em too. I guess they are quite common around the world.

Lin said...

That is a really great shot, Sharky! You got so close! And you didn't scare it.

Sharkbytes said...

Hi Lin- that's me, the bug whisperer

Denise Morgan-Irish said...

ok folks...i have been spending many hours trying to identify a bug that looks like this (helping 9 yr old daughter with school project due friday)...i kept leaning towards it being a type of stink bug because of the shape, going through hundred of pix online of stink bugs, just couldn't find one this smooth with this solid bright green color...but i also suspected that it was a "true bug" with it's shape...similar to my squash bugs... and i know this is an old post but here's my glitch....please help with your thoughts...mine has small sheer little wings...is it still the same, a stink bug? does that just indicate what stage of development maybe it's in...

Sharkbytes said...

Denise- This one has sheer wings. You can just see the end of one in the picture of it sitting on my thumb. Perhaps if they are small, it is the last instar before adulthood. See http://myqualityday.blogspot.com/2010/09/another-orange-bug.html

Glad I might have helped!

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